How Fynch will move 10 million people greener and healthier

Did you know that a significant part of CO2 emissions is caused by work-related mobility? The good news is that employers can relatively easily contribute to reduce their employees footprint. Serge van den Berg, co-founder & CEO of Fynch, explains how Fynch will encourage ten million people to travel more sustainably and vitally by 2030.

6 May 2024 4 minutes

Van den Berg: “Fynch is an impact-driven tech company that has been around for about three years. The impact we want to make is to reduce CO2 emissions by encouraging people to travel more consciously and sustainably. We see great opportunities, because mobility is a very large part of our CO2 footprint. In the Netherlands, approximately a quarter of CO2 emissions are caused by mobility. Half of that is work related. Employers therefore have a very large influence on that part of the CO2 footprint.”

Impact through behavioural change

Van den Berg: “We think you can achieve a lot through behavioural change. If employees cycle just a little more, use public transport more often and embrace electric transport, thus making more sustainable choices, we can make a lot of impact together. Our mission is to motivate at least ten million people by 2030, so that they actually demonstrate sustainable and vital travel behaviour.”

Van den Berg:  “We do that with technology. We have developed an app that automatically keeps track of all your travel movements. Of course, only if you as a user set it that way, because our software is completely developed based on privacy-by-design, in accordance with the GDPR and ISO27001 certified. The employee determines which data is made available to the employer. At the back, we link all mobility rules to the employee’s travel movements in accordance with the employer’s mobility policy. As an employer, you can set a higher mileage allowance for sustainable forms of mobility. In this way, sustainable travel also becomes financially more attractive for employees.”

Van den Berg: “Employees appear to use the Fynch app weekly and sometimes daily to view all their journeys and determine where their travel behaviour can be made even more sustainable. To change behaviour we use a scientific method, Organizational Behaviour Management or ‘OBM’ for short. This is based on the idea that if you gain insight into your behaviour, you become aware of your behaviour and that you will therefore see the consequences. For example, a monetary reward for certain choices can guide behaviour. But social rewards also have an effect. So: what is your CO2 footprint? How well are you doing in the field of sustainability? How do you compare to others and what progress are you making? For the latter you can think of badges that you can earn. With associated benefits, such as discounts on all kinds of sustainable products and services. We process things like that in our software to encourage sustainable travel behaviour.”

10% less CO2 emissions

Van den Berg: “We have just done an analysis with one of our first customers and you see really great results, such as 10% fewer car kilometres, 5% more bicycle kilometres, 9% more public transport trips and 10% fewer CO2 emissions per colleague. For example, there are no more double declarations or errors in commuting distances. We also share those results on our website.”

Van den Berg:  “If the employer does not yet have the intrinsic motivation to encourage sustainable travel behaviour, there is still reason enough to use the Fynch app. Employers can use the app to offer good, flexible employment conditions. Employers are also faced with increasingly demanding reporting obligations. In the Netherlands, for example, there is the Reporting Obligation for Work-related Personnel Mobility, the ‘WPM’. This obliges employers of more than 100 employees to report all kilometres per mode of transport annually, also divided into business and commuting. This is often not clear at all. The CSRD, Corporate Social Responsibility Directive, goes further. This obliges you as an employer to really implement reduction measures. In the entire chain in which the company operates, and that must also be auditable. So you have to demonstrably measure and report it. Fynch takes that worry off your hands; we supply exactly that data.”

Discounts and partnerships

Van den Berg: “We have a great collaboration with Garmin, for example. We have discounts you can get when you use Fynch. We are always looking at how we can expand that. We also work together with payroll software. An employee’s monthly travel allowance is calculated via the Fynch app. Payment is made via wages, so we also integrate with HR software such as AFAS. We like to work with those types of parties.”

Van den Berg: “Leasing companies are also very interesting for us. This year we signed a major partnership agreement with BMW financial services. They will use our white label software called Carbon Tracker, but the software is exactly the same as the Fynch software. They then offer it to their customers. This is our first white label partner, but this is of course possible for many more parties.”

Very much involved in Earth Valley

Van den Berg: “We have known ROM Utrecht Region for a while. For example, we have a Corona Bridging Loan through ‘the ROM’. We are also currently working on funding and we are also in talks about this with ROM Utrecht Region. In addition, as a Utrecht impact-driven company that is working on sustainability, we are involved in Earth Valley. For example, we contributed to Earth Valley roundtable discussions. And some of our customers are also in Earth Valley. We see various possibilities for the near future. For example: we focus on larger employers who work hybrid, who want to get rid of a fixed commuting allowance and who attach great importance to sustainability. Fortunately, more and more companies are doing so. Sustainability is now much more important than five years ago. An ‘Earth Valley’ meeting aimed at those types of employers would be very interesting for us. Then we can explore more options together.”

Van den Berg:  “It is not our only goal to reach 10 million people who we want to teach more sustainable travel behaviour in the Netherlands. We also want to make an impact internationally. We are already conducting pilots in the United States and other European countries. Our customer BMW is of course also based in Germany and another customer of ours, Volvo, in Sweden. These are countries we are looking at. Our aim is to go abroad by the end of next year. We first want to establish Fynch properly in the Netherlands. But then we will certainly scale up further!”

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